Today's post is part of the #SundaySeries blogging challenge from Lee Ann Spilane on the Portable Teacher blog.
We're developing a reading mindset in my classroom this year because students are born to read.
Simply watching the curiosity of of young children as they reach for books and crayons supports the idea that children are natural learners. Give a two-year-old a piece of paper and a crayon and watch her write.
A child's attempts to form words and sounds, which they do through repetition of those language speakers in their lives, demonstrates a child's intuit love of language.
Children love words.
Yet by the time many students reach my classroom, they no longer love language. Many are self-described "reluctant readers" who claim they "hate reading."
We can change this fixed mindset among our students. We can create in them a growth mindset. We can help students develop a reading mindset.
Here's how seniors in my classroom are developing a reading mindset this year:
Each day I begin class with fifteen minutes of independent reading followed by students composing a one-sentence essay that student volunteers share. Sharing provides students an opportunity to talk about their reading and their peers a chance to add a book to their TBR (to be read) list. Afterwards, I present a book talk and sometimes share both a passage from the book and a snippet from a review if I've written one.
The struggle students meet in developing a reading mindset is something we should embrace rather than approach with defeat. A recent article in Edutopia suggests that we all need to embrace where we are in the learning process while simultaneously believing we can get better. At school teachers must embrace this idea and lead the way in our classrooms.
Clearly, if we don't believe that not only is it within our nature to improve, but also within our control, we will become paralyzed. We have to realize as well that growth, change, and progress all take patience and hard work. We can add the idea of resiliency into this mix, because struggle and outright failure are integral parts of these processes.